Russia blocks UN Security Council condemnation of Syria attack

But as for impact on opinion of the President, the latest Economist/YouGov Poll finds the public's overall perception of Mr. Trump unchanged from a week ago, with one exception: More now think the President is likely to get the United States in a war than thought that last week.

Mr Tillerson met Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov for talks on Wednesday, during which Mr Lavrov reportedly said Russia was willing to reinstate an air safety agreement put on hold last week aimed at preventing accidents between United States and Russian jets in the skies above Syria.

Russian Federation on Wednesday vetoed a United Nations draft resolution demanding the Syrian government cooperate with an investigation of a suspected chemical attack that the West blames on President Bashar Assad's forces.

The Moscow news conference came after Putin met Tillerson for the first time since Trump took office.

A third motivation for the Kremlin was to bolster its traditional client, Assad, and to expand Russian influence in the turbulent Middle East. Russia has a long-standing naval station at Tartus, and has built at least one big new air base in Syria that it clearly intends to keep.

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According to the United Nations , at least 4.7 million people are living in hard-to-reach and besieged areas in Syria and are exposed to grave protection threats.

Unlike he has done with previous secretaries of state, Putin didn't keep Tillerson waiting for hours on Wednesday. He even pointed out that all the vacancies in the U.S. State Department make it hard to tell what's going on in the U.S. capital.

The meeting agenda wasn't announced.

It's the eighth time Russian Federation has vetoed a proposed Security Council resolution on Syria. Lavrov said it was tilted to blame Assad. Putin has spoken of having proof that it was a "false flag" operation meant to rally worldwide opposition to Assad.

Trump envoy Tillerson's talks with Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov have been haunted by the incident that saw the U.S. launch punitive strike against Assad's forces.

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Syria and Russian Federation "have sought to confuse the world community about who is responsible for using chemical weapons against the Syrian people in this and earlier attacks", according to an intelligence assessment released by the White House. "We consider it of utmost importance to prevent the risks of replay of similar action in the future".

Tillerson conceded the two world powers had "sharp differences" that have obstructed cooperation but voiced optimism they could make progress.

Despite remarks by both diplomats that their nations have many common interests, Lavrov rehashed an extended list of Russian grievances, from NATO's actions in Kosovo in 1999 to US attempts to remove dictators from Sudan to Libya. "I think it's very bad for Russian Federation". Lavrov called the strike a "an unlawful attack against Syria" and added that Russian Federation considers it "fundamentally important not to let these actions happen again". US intelligence agencies have said similar. "We've seen all that and we all know how it's going to end". "No", Trump said. "But if I see them using gas. we have to do something".

But he was firm that only Assad's forces could have carried out such a strike and insisted that Russian Federation must do more to help strip the regime of its chemical arsenal. "The world's two foremost nuclear powers can not have this relationship", he said.

"Russia would be happy to have an exit strategy, but demanding that we should just ditch Assad will only antagonize Putin", he says. "I think it's very bad for mankind".

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Mr Safronkov also claimed America's cruise missile strikes on a Syrian airbase "was carried out in violation of global norms". His comments came moments before President Donald Trump said relations with Russian Federation had reached a "all-time low".

Trump says Syrian President Bashar Assad is "an animal".

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